Planning a vacation can be tough, especially for those following a gluten-free diet! Rachel Kahn is helping us get ready for summer travel with six tips for gluten-free eaters. Rachel is the founder of LoveSelf, a gluten-free wellness magazine dedicated to inspiring self-love through real earth empowered food. Rachel began studying holistic health and nutrition over a decade ago and attributes her own healing to lessons in body nurturing choices.
Traveling gluten free is challenging enough, but traveling gluten free and healthy now that adds an entirely other layer of complexity! Below are my six tips for fabulous, healthy and inspired eating while traveling. Here’s to yummy!
- Technology is your friend– I recall my celiac diagnosis over a decade ago. Back in those days going out to eat meant iceberg lettuce and a prayer. Today you can search gluten free and so much information will appear. Even better?! Download an app. My total favorite is Find Me Gluten Free. Nope, I wasn’t paid to say that. It is just truth. Check out the menu in advance. Add another search criteria. How about organic? Maybe Paleo or even vegan. Random browsing has brought me the best surprises.
- Pack snacks– One of the interesting drawbacks of the recent gluten free nirvana is so much of it has become junk food. Just because your packet of cookies say gluten free doesn’t mean they are healthy. Try baking healthier versions in advance. Need inspiration? Check out our recipes at Love Self. Don’t have time to bake or traveling for weeks? Go to the nearest organic grocery and buy your favorite nuts. Add gluten free dark chocolate and goji berries to almonds and you will feel oh so special.
- Make new friends– Did you know that meetings exist all over the country for those that are gluten free? Search support groups in your destination spot. Stop in. They are sure to have food and companionship.
- Balance is good– I don’t miss gluten. I never feel deprived. Okay, so I just lied. Once a year, I crave a caramel roll. Now I will tell you I am not a sugar lady, nor do I like processed carbs, so you can imagine how my desire for the sugar bomb takes me quite by surprise. Here’s the deal. The average Joe (or Josephine) can have a cinnamon roll whenever they want. Finding one gluten free is like that golden needle in the haystack. So if on your journey, one magically appears. Eat it. Not with guilt. Just with blessings and love. I only ask that you be sure to have a carrot afterwards.
- Bring a cooler or make one up– What do you mean bring a cooler, you ask? With all the flight restrictions I can barely lug one carry on. True! Alright. Bring a cooler when driving. Load it up. Renting a car after a flight? Here is a trick. Take two grocery store brown bags, ask for a plastic bag of ice, and put the plastic bag inside the doubled brown bags. Set your goodies on the ice. Fold the top and voila instant cooler. Short of a desert 90 degree day, you can find yourself with several hours of happy sandwiches and veggies.
- Take care of yourself– Most importantly in all our food choices we must love ourselves well. Meditate in the morning before your inspired juice. Hug a tree while chomping on a gluten free treat, be thankful for the sun and your health. Why? Because our food is love. It gives us energy and we offer gratitude.
Enjoy and happy gluten free eating.